2017-01-20 training log

I hate to say it, but I’m getting used to 20-rep squats. Doesn’t mean they are easy or I’m loving it, but it sure is a gut-check. 🙂

Work up today went well. Working on ensuring depth. Also working on constantly stretching my shoulders out. I’ve had no pain in my shoulders/arms in some time now, which is great. I continue to work on stretching there, flexibility, mobility, etc. Still a ways to go before I get to the point I want, but progressing.

20-reps… it’s still not totally killer, but I expect over the weeks, if I just adopt that 60% weight, it’ll soon enough kick my ass.

Continuing to focus the assistance work on the muscle, the slower eccentric, the explosive concentric. It’s still work for me to remember to do that, but it’s getting there.

Still no ab work. Abs are feeling better since that little strain, and I think I’m out of the woods, but I know better than to start right back the moment I feel good. Next week I may add a little ab work back in, like just some light crunches, 5-10 reps, 3 sets or thereabouts. Nothing that really taxes me, but gets a little work and eases back in.

All in all, very happy with how this first cycle of “531, offseason for mass” is going. I’m going to be upping my weights and kicking into the next cycle (still doing 6-week cycles) on Monday.

Based upon 5/3/1 for Powerlifting, off-season for mass

  • Squats
    • bar x whatever
    • 125 x 5
    • 155 x 5
    • 185 x 3
    • 230 x 5
    • 265 x 3
    • 295 x 2
    • 185 x 20 (20-Rep set)
  • Leg Press
    • 225 x 10
    • 275 x 10
    • 315 x 10
    • 315 x 10
  • Hyperextensions
    • 12 x 10
    • 12 x 10
    • 12 x 10
    • 12 x 10

2017-01-19 training log

Today was really good.

At times the top-set feels so heavy, but then the back-off set just flies. It really gives a lot of creedence to the “over-warm-up” strategy (as Paul Carter terms it).

One thing I didn’t focus on as much was ensuring mind-muscle connection, fast/explosive concentric, slower eccentric, etc.. Most evident on pulldowns and DB presses. It wasn’t bad, but not as good as it could have been. I was in hurry today, so I think that made me feel rushed and so I was just moving through stuff.

But still, I got a good workout.

On the 100 reps, my body is adjusting to the torment and I can push a LOT harder through the pain now. This is good.

All in all, pretty happy with the template work.

Oh, and I’m now at 239. Woo! I’m back into the 230’s for my bodyweight. Progress is nice.

Based upon 5/3/1 for Powerlifting, off-season for mass

  • Bench Press (superset with medium-rep lat pulldowns)
    • bar x whatever
    • 100 x 5
    • 120 x 5
    • 145 x 3
    • 185 x 5
    • 210 x 3
    • 235 x 2
    • 185 x 15 (drop set)
  • Wide-pronated grip lat pulldowns (to chest)
    • 85 x 12
    • 95 x 12
    • 105 x 12
    • 115 x 12
    • 115 x 12
    • 115 x 12
    • 115 x 12
  • DB Bench Press
    • 65e x 10
    • 65e x 10
    • 65e x 10
    • 65e x 10
    • 65e x 8
  • Chest-Supported DB Row
    • 50e x 12
    • 50e x 12
    • 50e x 12
    • 50e x 12
    • 50e x 11
  • Pushdowns (EZ-bar)
    • 35 x 100
  • Face Pulls
    • 50 x 100

2017-01-17 training log

Today was good. I am glad I “reset” my deadlift based off the former progression rather than the 1RM I set.

Again, went for a double on the last set, instead of pure prescribed reps.

RDL’s I tweaked a bit. I realize that as I’m descending my knees get a little more bend in them — hamstring flexibility, and the lack of it. On the later sets I gave just a slight bend but did my best to hold it all the way through. When I did that, I felt it a lot more in my hamstrings and the work was different. I’m going to keep the weight steady and continue to work that technique point. Besides, that should over time help with flexibility too. 🙂

Leg curls – man, it’s so light, but when you curl all the way to your butt, squeeze, and slowly descend, it really adds up.

Skipped abs. Whatever I tweaked the other day during leg raises it’s almost gone, but not totally. I’m going to just skip direct ab work the rest of this week to let things heal and I’ll reassess next week.

Based upon 5/3/1 for Powerlifting, off-season for mass

  • Deadlift
    • 155 x 5
    • 195 x 5
    • 235 x 3
    • 290 x 5
    • 330 x 3
    • 370 x 2
  • RDL
    • 185 x 10
    • 185 x 10
    • 185 x 10
    • 185 x 10
  • Bent Over Rows
    • 140 x 10
    • 140 x 10
    • 140 x 10
    • 140 x 6
  • Leg Curls
    • 30 x 12
    • 30 x 12
    • 30 x 12
    • 30 x 7

2017-01-16 training log

Very happy with today’s session.

Pressing went well. It’s hard for me to stick to prescribed reps, but I’m doing it. However, I am making an exception for the 1+ week — I’ll do a double, but no more. Things felt really strong tho and I wanted to keep going.

I do think first-set-last has been a good approach to the drop-set. Next 3-week cycle I will bump it up slightly turning into rest-pause. That’s probably the only significant change I’ll make to things for the next 3-weeks.

All in all, just a good day. Solid.

On the diet front, 2 weeks on Base and my weight hasn’t moved, so I figure that’s a reasonable set-point. Thing is, looking at the “cut 1” tab and it really only drops fats. That’s fine, but from past RP experience it may not be enough. So I’m actually sticking with the Base tab right now but instead of eating on “medium” my work days will eat on “light” — which the rough math on total calories is around 500 cals/day drop, which OUGHT to see some movement/traction. I’m going to give it a week with this approach and see how it goes.

Based upon 5/3/1 for Powerlifting, off-season for mass

  • Press (superset with high-rep behind-the-neck lat pulldowns)
    • bar x whatever
    • 65 x 5
    • 80 x 5
    • 100 x 3
    • 125 x 5
    • 140 x 3
    • 155 x 2
    • 125 x 11 (drop set)
  • Behind-the-neck Pulldowns
    • 75 x 15
    • 85 x 15
    • 95 x 15
    • 105 x 15
    • 105 x 15
    • 105 x 15
    • 105 x 15
  • DB Shoulder Press
    • 50e x 10
    • 50e x 10
    • 50e x 10
    • 50e x 10
    • 50e x 10
  • BB Curls
    • 50 x 10
    • 50 x 10
    • 50 x 10
    • 50 x 10
    • 50 x 10
  • DB Rear Raises (superset with lat raises)
    • 12e x 10
    • 12e x 10
    • 12e x 10
  • DB Lateral Raises
    • 20e x 10
    • 20e x 10
    • 20e x 8

Sunday Metal – Sugartooth

Sugartooth – “Sold My Fortune”

It’s a shame these guys got lost in the shuffle of “must find more grunge bands that sound like Soundgarden”. But such is the music business. They were pretty solid.

The waiting is the hardest part…

I’m waiting for something to arrive.

I finally have a tracking number, but not only do I have to wait for it to be delivered, I have to wait to be told when I can come pick it up.

I am hoping to have it in time for an event, because I’m itching to see if things truly will be better. It’s all about timing, and it’s all out of my control.

Sigh.

But I reckon you’ll be curious to hear my reports once I can deliver them.

Stay tuned…

2017-01-13 training log

20 rep squats are a joy. 🙂

Overall the day went fine. Again, still narrowing down the refinements to the new program, but it comes along well.

Bumping up my 20-rep set to 60% of training max worked better. I’m not sure if I should go 65%-70%, because I suspect it’s easy now and in the coming cycles it’s going to get hard quickly. 🙂 As it is, it’s certainly some work, and I think a little lighter is good for me to help get pacing down. It’s important to breathe well. Sometimes if say I’m doing a triple I might hold my breath the whole time to maintain a high-level of tightness, but you just can’t with 20-reps. So I think I may stick with 60% for a bit and get the rhythm down, so when it does get heavier things run smoothly.

That said, it’s also hard to stick to prescribed reps. 😉 I MAY cheat on that slightly on my 1+ week and just go for 2. We’ll see how next week goes.

But all in all, just dialing things in.

Oh, leg raises. On the 5th rep of the 1st set I felt something in my lower abs (around my beltline). I started 2nd set and the pain flared up — nope. Stopped. I hope it’s just a light strain of something. We’ll see how the next few days pan out. I may wind up having to drop the leg raises in favor of something else. TBD.

Aside: one of the biggest (house)flies I’ve ever seen was flying around the gym today. He was hyuuuge. Fear of inhaling him while squatting was a very real fear. LOL. 🙂

Based upon 5/3/1 for Powerlifting, off-season for mass

  • Squats
    • bar x whatever
    • 125 x 5
    • 155 x 5
    • 185 x 3
    • 215 x 3
    • 250 x 3
    • 280 x 3
    • 185 x 20 (20-Rep set)
  • Leg Press
    • 225 x 10
    • 275 x 10
    • 275 x 10
    • 275 x 10
  • Hyperextensions
    • 10 x 10
    • 10 x 10
    • 10 x 10
    • 10 x 10
  • Hanging Leg Raises
    • BW x 5

2017-01-12 training log

Pretty good day. I’m getting more dialed in, both in weight and technique shift.

It’s still a little weird for me to do the 3-0-1-0 type of tempo, but I’m getting there. It helps to also focus on the muscle, not the movement. For example during the DB presses, don’t think about pressing but just think about trying to contract the pecs to move the upper arm in. We’ll see long-term how this all goes.

Benching was good. Happy with the drop set (first-set-last weight).

DB benches were also good. Went up in weight, better form, and really let it get a good range of motion here — settle into that stretch at the bottom.

I thought about upping weight on rows, but I realized there’s more I can squeeze out here — literally. Worked on getting a fuller range of motion and really getting a squeeze at the top. Wring out all I can.

Then the 100’reppers were fun. It’s really more a mental game with them. 🙂

Body is adjusting too. Don’t feel nearly as sore now.

Weight is holding steady, and it’s almost the end of my 2 weeks on Base. So I think moving to Cut 1 will happen shortly.

Based upon 5/3/1 for Powerlifting, off-season for mass

  • Bench Press (superset with lat pulldowns)
    • bar x whatever
    • 100 x 5
    • 120 x 5
    • 145 x 3
    • 170 x 3
    • 195 x 3
    • 220 x 3
    • 170 x 15 (drop set)
  • Wide-grip Lat pulldowns (to chest)
    • 80 x 12
    • 90 x 12
    • 100 x 12
    • 110 x 12
    • 110 x 12
    • 110 x 12
    • 110 x 12
  • DB Bench Press
    • 60e x 10
    • 60e x 10
    • 60e x 10
    • 60e x 10
  • Chest-Supported DB Row
    • 45e x 12
    • 45e x 12
    • 45e x 12
    • 45e x 12
    • 45e x 12
  • Pushdowns (EZ-bar)
    • 35 x 100
  • Face Pulls
    • 50 x 100

2017-01-10 training log

Getting the new template dialed in a little more.

Last week’s deadlifting was heavy, relatively speaking. It was re-calculated off the 1RM PR, which was crazy high and it actually bumped my workload up. My fear is it was too high, and I may not be able to sustain that rate for 8 cycles while I go through this cut phase. Besides, of all 4 lifts, the deadlift was the one that continued to have the most wiggle room and NOT be in need of a reset. So I just dropped back to my original progression — which interestingly means today I lifted about the same as I lifted last week. 🙂 But that’s fine: start light, progress longer. Always good.

RDLs are feeling better. I feel more in the correct groove for them and like I am getting something out of them. I don’t want to push it too hard too fast and lose the proper feel, but I do feel I can move along here some.

Rows are rows. Biggest thing is pulling “from the elbows” so that it’s all a back movement, not an arm movement.

Leg curls were funny. That 25# feels like nothing, but as I work through the sets and reps with that 3-0-1-1 type of tempo, boy it adds up!

Ab wheel I kept at 5 reps instead of trying to go more — it’s a little hard on the old body and I’d rather continue slow and get my body used to it. I should be able to push it a little more next week.

All in all, felt like a solid day.

Based upon 5/3/1 for Powerlifting, off-season for mass

  • Deadlift
    • 155 x 5
    • 195 x 5
    • 235 x 3
    • 275 x 3
    • 310 x 3
    • 350 x 3
  • RDL
    • 175 x 10
    • 175 x 10
    • 175 x 10
    • 175 x 10
  • Bent Over Rows
    • 135 x 10
    • 135 x 10
    • 135 x 10
    • 135 x 8
  • Leg Curls
    • 25 x 10 (forgot the goal was 12)
    • 25 x 12
    • 25 x 12
    • 25 x 12
  • Ab Wheel
    • BW x 5
    • BW x 5
    • BW x 5
    • BW x 5

2017-01-09 training log

Second week on the new programs, and so far so good.

I’m getting things dialed in in terms of weights, reps, and hitting the things I wanted to hit. So today started to feel a bit more like where I want things. Still not 100% there, but better.

Like with Pressing, the pressing itself was fine. It does feel strange not going for rep PRs, but such is the template. The drop-set I had just picked a weight (60% of training max) and was going to stick with it straight for the cycle, but when I hit the 15 reps easily last week I figured that wasn’t enough. So I’m trying to apply the “first set last” approach, thus today was 70%. That felt like what it should be. I’m guessing next week and maybe as the weeks wear on that I may not hit the 10-15 reps, but that’s fine — I can adjust come that time. Meantime it’s really less about FSL and more about just finding a right weight.

Very happy with my choice of doing behind-the-neck pulldowns as my superset when pressing. I’m working up to 15-reps on each set, so it’s generally light, but that’s the point. I’m doing behind-the-neck to help me with my shoulder and posture mobility issues, so this helps open me up, stretch a bit, and move in ways that I need to be moved. Focus on that fast concentric, pause, slow eccentric. Focus on movement from the elbows, trying to just arc/move my elbows into my side, and really working the muscle. This weight still felt a little light, but I also know I’m not doing all the reps like I need to – still finding that cadence. So I think I’ll keep the weight here another week and continue to improve my form and squeezing every bit I can out of the weight.

DB Pressing is similar: fast concentric, slow eccentric. Still working on that tempo.

And the BB curls… I feel so weak just curling 50#, but when you really focus on just moving it with the biceps and slowly lowering it, it really adds up.

In other news, weight has dropped from 243 to 240. I am not sure how much is tissue loss vs. just de-bloating, but we’ll see how it goes — one more week on “base” and then I’ll move to “cut 1” on the Renaissance template. Or who knows: if I drop another 2-3 this week, I may stay on base longer. You want at least 2 weeks on base, but if you continue to lose on base, stick with it and milk it for all you can.

Based upon 5/3/1 for Powerlifting, off-season for mass

  • Press (superset with high-rep behind-the-neck lat pulldowns)
    • bar x whatever
    • 65 x 5
    • 80 x 5
    • 100 x 3
    • 115 x 3
    • 130 x 3
    • 150 x 3
    • 115 x 12 (drop set)
  • DB Shoulder Press
    • 45e x 10
    • 45e x 10
    • 45e x 10
    • 45e x 10
    • 45e x 10
  • BB Curls
    • 50 x 10
    • 50 x 10
    • 50 x 10
    • 50 x 10
    • 50 x 8
  • DB Rear Raises (superset with lat raises)
    • 10e x 10
    • 10e x 10
    • 10e x 10
  • DB Lateral Raises
    • 20e x 10
    • 20e x 10
    • 20e x 7